never look too closely at a pigeon.
Things are getting a little stagnant on day two of The Great Heat. Yesterday, walking around in your underwear in your apartment with all the windows flung open, and your neighbors’ voices reverberating in the thick dark air was exciting, like filming a Spike Lee Joint in a tenement in Hell’s Kitchen, but today it’s all getting a little too Kids for my sake, and I’m starting to worry that the next time I turn a corner I’m going to be sneaking into a public pool, while shooting heroin, and carrying a boom box on my shoulder that blasts Ditty by Paperboy over and over and over, and there’s a reason we live in San Francisco and not New York City in August.
I’m in Civic Center sitting on a bench in a kid’s playground a little worried about being childless, because the sign says, “No adults allowed unless accompanied by a child.” I’m talking to my friend Sara about Central America, and The Blue Hole off the coast of Belize, where she hopes to be scuba diving this summer. I’m thinking that if a cop comes over and tries to stop me from doing what I want to be doing ie. sitting in a playground without a kid, I’ll just go, “No, no little Jack’s right over there on the monkey bars,” and then point into the distance, with a sigh that could carry the weight of the world on it’s shoulders. A sigh that says, Jack’s a good boy, but his dad is in jail, and it’s too hot out today isn’t it hot? and I know you don’t see him, but he’s there or maybe he isn’t and then don’t you feel sorry for me anyway? I would be a good mother to Jack if he existed…
I am snapped out of this reverie by Sara asking something about whether I would be interested in seeing some ruins (always) and the sight of a mangy pigeon creeping ever closer to my foot. Never look too closely at a pigeon, because if you do you will see things that you do not want to see. After accidentally looking to closely at this particular bird, I saw that it was missing a foot, and instead had a little fleshy stump where its claws used to be, and it hobbled around on this, not seeming to be bothered in the least, and I named it Clubfoot, and thought that if there is anywhere that pigeons belong that place is a hot day in San Francisco. Tough little birds.
Earlier my mom had asked me how the job hunt was going, and I was not unhappy to admit that it had grown stagnant, and she was not unhappy to say, “Well as long as you’re not asking me for money,” which is not her normal response to anything, so I think we have reached a point where we both know that I am doing things, although many of those things I do not get paid for, but that one day I might, and as my dad says, “We think you might be a good investment.” Which immediately made me feel sad for any kid who is not considered to be a good investment of which there are many, but I also felt good about this mainly because they’ve already put in 22 years, and I hope they know that their end of the hard work is mainly over now, but for the grace of god and all that.
But then I felt weird, because low expectations are good work if you can keep em.